Live in the Present
Throughout life, we look forward to the next thing. Use retirement to embrace the world around you and be present in your own life. I don't know about you, but I've lost many days of sleepwalking, not engaged in what was going on around me. I focused too much energy on wanting to get somewhere else or worrying about the future without enjoying where I was. Do you fret about what never materializes? Living in the present reduces anxiety and increases your peace of mind.
Keep track of short-term goals and do things that matter to you. These might be as simple as creating healthy eating habits or starting and sticking with an exercise routine. Permit yourself to do something just for fun and allow yourself to lose track of time. Time is what you have. Enjoy it. Act like a tourist and explore your city. Enjoy simple pleasures and morning routines. Laugh a lot. Love more. Savor everything.
Commit to cease complaining about the things you cannot change and refuse to dwell on negative circumstances. Give the gift of forgiveness to others and yourself.
The state of happiness does not develop by random chance. It has all to do with our choices and the effort we make to live untouched by our circumstances. It's not pretending our emotions are not real. We can't choose our feelings, but we can determine how we react to them. As much as it tempts us, we can avoid wallowing in our disappointments. The choice is ours.
Embark on a purpose-driven life that leads to contentment and delight. Genuine joy does not come from catering to our self-interests, but through uniting with and contributing to society. We must be part of something greater than ourselves, which means reducing ourselves and thinking about ourselves less. As a giver, we reach outward toward the beauty in the world, and are generous with our time and resources. Think about others.
In everything I did, I showed you that by this hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive. – Acts 20:35
By the time you've retired, you no doubt have hundreds and thousands of things to be thankful for. Whatever you focus on gets bigger. A grateful heart expands. Think about what makes you smile. As we smile, we are instructing ourselves to feel joy. Make it a routine part of your day to count your blessings. You'll experience joy in the second act by sharing it.
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